Johnson Gives Feingold Huge Opening on Child Sex Abuse Law Suits | Wis.Community

Johnson Gives Feingold Huge Opening on Child Sex Abuse Law Suits

With Ron Johnson's new ad, he has chosen to make settling of law suits and lawyering an issue in this campaign:

There are 100 members of the U.S. Senate.  57 of them, including Russ Feingold, are lawyers.  That would be fine if we had a law suit to settle, but we have an economy to fix.

I love the goldfish memory of this campaign.  They just finished arguing tooth-and-nail that Russ Feingold was never an attorney and has always been a career politician.

Then, they have to temerity to not only bring up the topic of settling law suits, but then infer that Johnson had no experience in this area. 

Oh, that's rich, Ron!  I guess you're forgetting your time on the Green Bay Diocese Finance Council.

But, since you brought it up... let talk more about it:  You see, under Canon Law, the Finance Council has ultimate authority, among other things, in the settling of law suits.  And what is the main kind of law suit you dealt with as a member of the Finance Council?  Sex abuse claims by children assaulted by priests and other clergy of the Green Bay Diocese.

In fact, you even went to the Wisconsin State Senate to strongly lobby against a bill that would have removed the statute of limitiations that prevents child victims of sexual assault from suing their assaulters and the institutions that enabled them.  And when you got down to Madison, you not only spoke out against the Child Victims Act, you categorically spoke out against ALL law suits against dioceses and other employers that get sued because they reassign instead of arresting employees they know to be pedophiles.

And here's the kicker:  You testified before the Wiconsin State Senate while your Green Bay Diocese Finance Council was trying to get a law suit dismissed. Not on grounds that the diocese was guilty-- they transferred predator priest John Feeney 14 times in 14 years-- but because... wait for it... the statute of limitations had expired.  And here's the best part:  the guy that was responsible for reassigning the predator preist, Rober Morneau, is still the auxillory bishop at the Green Bay diocese and one of his functions is to head-up the Finance Council, which Johnson was a member.

So, all in all, I would say you have all kinds of experience settling law suits-- not to mention all the ones you settled at Pacur... which I'm sure you'll be releasing since you brought this issue up.

UPDATE:  Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) is holding a press conference this afternoon, demanding that Johnson reveal the names of sexual predators kept secret in lawsuits that he settled as a member of the Green Bay Diocese Finance Council.  As mentioned before, the Finance Council has ultimate authority to grant or deny sexual assault lawsuits and can even override the wishes of the Bishop. Read more.


September 29, 2010 - 8:42am